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Math Galaxy Word Problems Fun Review by Katherine Averill

Galaxy of Education
430 W. Upsal St.
Philadelphia, PA 19119
http://www.mathgalaxy.com/

Does your student need practice with word problems? Are you tired of searching for problems online? Look no further. Math Galaxy has put an end to the searching with Math Galaxy Word Problems Fun. This CD-Rom offers such a variety of challenging word problems that your student can play for hours.

Math Galaxy Word Problems Fun is a multi-leveled game for elementary and middle school students. The game covers a wide range of topics, including whole numbers, fractions, decimals, ratios and proportions, percents, and negative numbers. Additional problems include time, measurement (length, area, volume, and weight), angles, graphs and tables.

The student begins by choosing a level and what type of problems to do. Problems appear individually on the screen with a keypad pictured to type in solutions. If the solution is correct, the player spins the computerized spinner. The player advances through the maze and may land on a cave. If so, the player may choose to enter the cave to collect treasure, or proceed to the next problem. The goal is to collect treasure from each cave as you move through the labyrinth before the many obstacles destroy your robot. The game graphics are very simplistic, and we had no problem loading this onto our computer, which uses Vista as the operating system. I suspect it would work well on older computers. System requirements are listed as Windows 98 or later or Mac OS X.

We found the problems to progress in difficulty at an appropriate rate--not too easy and increasing in difficulty to keep it interesting. The only problem was in figuring out how to maneuver in the caves. Perhaps it was the simplicity of the game or the lack of direction. Both of my daughters, as well as myself, found the games in the caves challenging to get through. This caused some frustration because we solved the problems correctly but couldn't get through the labyrinth without getting the treasure. With some practice, our success improved, though still not to our liking. I would guess that the game would be well liked by boys, with the spider and insect graphics found within the caves.

Overall, I would recommend Math Galaxy Word Problems Fun for an elementary or middle school student who needs practice with word problems. The game will certainly take the drudgery out of doing word problems. Children who like the challenge of working through mazes and searching for treasure will especially enjoy this simple yet creative game.

Product review by Katherine Averill, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, March 2010

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